The Security Council today authorized the resumed drawdown for the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) — suspended since September due to the Ebola outbreak — and narrowed its mandate to exclude assistance for senatorial elections that were held in December 2014.
Through the unanimous adoption of resolution 2215 (2015) under United Nations Charter Chapter VII, the Council endorsed the Secretary-General’s 15 March 2015 recommendation on the drawdown of UNMIL uniformed personnel, authorizing him to carry out the drawdown’s third phase to arrive at a military ceiling of 3,590 personnel, and reduce the police ceiling to 1,515 personnel — both by September 2015. The Mission’s mandate would no longer include support for senatorial elections, outlined in resolution 2190 (2014).
By other terms, the Council reaffirmed its expectation that the Government would fully assume its complete security responsibilities no later than 30 June 2016, as well as its intention to consider the Mission’s continued reconfiguration. It requested the Secretary-General to continue to streamline UNMIL activities across its civilian, police and military components and to consolidate its presence in line with the security transition.
In that context, the Council called on Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire to continue reinforcing cooperation, particularly on the border area, and on United Nations entities in those countries to support those authorities.
(Resolution 2190 (2014) had requested the Secretary-General to provide an update no later than 15 March 2015 on the situation in Liberia, especially an assessment of the impact of the Ebola outbreak on the stability of Liberia and options for resuming the drawdown of UNMIL’s military strength, in line with the goal of completing the security transition.)
The meeting began at 10:08 a.m. and ended at 10:12 a.m.
The full text of resolution 2215 (2015) reads as follows:
“The Security Council,
“Recalling its previous resolutions concerning the situation in Liberia and the subregion, in particular resolutions 1509 (2003), 2066 (2012), 2116 (2013), 2176 (2014), 2177 (2014) and 2190 (2014),
“Commending the Government of Liberia for responding effectively to the Ebola outbreak in Liberia and recognizing, in this regard, the resilience of the people and Government of Liberia, and its security institutions, especially the Armed Forces of Liberia and the Liberia National Police,
“Welcoming the efforts of Member States, bilateral partners and multilateral organizations, including the United Nations, African Union (AU) and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), to support the Government of Liberia in its response to the Ebola outbreak, further welcoming the contributions of the international community, including the Peacebuilding Commission, to assist Liberia in its comprehensive development commitment in the post-Ebola recovery period and strongly encouraging further steps forward in this regard,
“Recalling its endorsement, in resolution 2066 (2012), of the Secretary-General’s recommendation to decrease the military strength of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) in three phases between August 2012 and July 2015,
“Taking note of the report of 15 August 2014 of the Secretary-General (S/2014/598), as well as his update to the Council on 16 March 2015 and recommendations on the resumption of the drawdown of UNMIL,
“Determining that the situation in Liberia continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security in the region,
“Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,
“1. Endorses the Secretary-General’s recommendation in his update of 16 March 2015 on the drawdown of UNMIL uniformed personnel, and consistent with resolution 2190 (2014), authorizes the Secretary-General to implement the third phase of the phased drawdown to arrive at a new military ceiling of 3,590 personnel and to reduce the police ceiling to 1,515 personnel, with both ceilings to be reached by September 2015;
“2. Decides that the mandate of UNMIL shall no longer include the task set forth in paragraph 10 (d) (i) of resolution 2190 (2014);
“3. Reaffirms its expectation that the Government of Liberia will assume fully its complete security responsibilities from UNMIL no later than 30 June 2016 and also reaffirms its intention to consider the continued and future reconfiguration of UNMIL accordingly;
“4. Requests the Secretary-General to continue to streamline the activities of UNMIL across its civilian, police and military components to fully reflect the downsizing of the police and military components and narrowing of the mandate decided in resolution 2190 (2014) and this resolution and further requests the Secretary-General to consolidate the civilian, police and military presence of UNMIL in line with the security transition noted in paragraph 3 above;
“5. Calls on the Governments of Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire to continue reinforcing their cooperation, particularly with respect to the border area, and in this regard, calls upon all United Nations entities in Côte d’Ivoire and Liberia, including all relevant components of the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) and UNMIL, within their respective mandates, capabilities and areas of deployment, as well as the two United Nations Country Teams, where relevant and appropriate, to support the Ivoirian and Liberian authorities;
“6. Reaffirms the importance of inter-mission cooperation arrangements as UNMIL and UNOCI downsize, as well as the inter-mission cooperation framework set out in resolution 1609 (2005) and recalls the relevant provisions of resolution 2162 (2014) in this regard;
“7. Decides to remain seized of the matter.”